On the ISIS Front Lines at Kurdistan, Northern Iraq. Matthew van Dyke, SonsofLibertyInternational.com.
04-14-2016 (Photo: Kurdish peshmerga fighters seek cover while under attack from ISIS forces on the front lines in) http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/contact http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/schedules http://johnbatchelorshow.com/blog Twitter: @BatchelorShow On the ISIS Front Lines at Kurdistan, Northern Iraq. Matthew van Dyke, SonsofLibertyInternational.com. MAKHMOUR, Iraq — Nonstop small-arms fire rattled across the grassy plains in this corner of northern Iraq. Ambulances raced down a dirt path away from the front lines, carrying wounded fighters. Reinforcements whizzed in the other direction. A large blast rocked the town of Nasr, roughly a mile from where I stood, and smoke flooded the air — either from an Islamic State suicide bomber or a coalition airstrike. Here, Kurdish Peshmerga and Iraqi Army soldiers are trying to claw their way northwest to the Islamic State’s stronghold of Mosul, roughly 50 miles away. Nasr is no more than a couple dozen houses perched on a hill, but it is one of the first steps in Iraq’s recently announced operation to recapture Mosul, the country’s second-largest city. The offensive, which was launched on March 24, is already displacing civilians and threatening to cause a humanitarian crisis. An estimated 20,000 people live in the territory between the front line and the Tigris River, toward which the Iraqi Army is slowly advancing. More than 2,000 people had already fled to Makhmour from Islamic State-controlled territory by March 25, according to aid workers. They were being held in a two-floor youth recreation center, as Kurdish Peshmerga officers suspect that there are Islamic State sleeper cells in the group and are questioning the men. Every inch of the building was packed full, and dirt and scraps of food were scattered throughout the throngs of people. A thick, rotten smell hung in the air. I saw several humanitarian groups offering boxes of food, sometimes leading to pushing and shoving — a moving human wall of misery. http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/04/12/the-peshmerga-isnt-afraid-of-islamic-state-iraqi-army-makhmour/